Ringgit to trade higher against greenback next week

KUALA LUMPUR: The weakening sentiment for the US dollar will likely help to boost the demand for the ringgit next week, to trade between 3.88-3.92 against the greenback, a dealer said.

He said mounting concerns over the political turmoil in the US, including President Donald Trump's decision to replace the National Security Advisor, H.R. McMaster and to fire the Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, had negatively weighed on interest for the safe-haven currency.

"This will help boost sentiment for other currencies, especially the emerging market currencies.

"Nevertheless, fears of a potential trade war would likely reduce the appetite globally," he told Bernama.

Earlier this week, Trump had announced that the country would impose tariff on up to US$60 billion (US$1 = RM3.92) of Chinese imports, specifically targeting the technology and telecommunications sectors.

The White House said the move was to pressure China into cutting its trade surplus with the US by US$100 billion.

On a Friday-to-Friday basis, the local note finished firmer against the greenback at 3.9070/9120 from 3.9100/9140 the previous week.

The ringgit had started the week higher, spurred by upbeat local economic reports and weaker performance of the greenback.

Worries over increased protectionism under the Trump administration had muted risk appetite globally, including for the ringgit, thus pushing the currency to retreat.

However, the local unit rebounded following the emergence of fresh political concerns at the White House.

Meanwhile, the ringgit was traded mostly lower against a basket of major currencies.

It fell against the Singapore dollar to 2.9761/9810 from 2.9653/9694 last Friday and declined against the yen to 3.6953/6010 from 3.6610/6662 last week.

The ringgit depreciated against the euro to 4.8138/8215 from 4.8093/8158 last Friday and weakened vis-a-vis the British pound to 5.4565/4643 from 5.3997/3060 previously. — Bernama